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Old 02-03-2013, 11:06 AM   #421
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Gene, what is the percentage the realtors take for buying/selling in your area?
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Old 02-03-2013, 12:59 PM   #422
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Aage, generally they want 6%. I have bargained them to 5%. When 2 realtors are involved they split it with the range being from 2.8 to 3.2% when the total commission is 6%. I did have a realtor call me to try to get me to hire him and he said he generally wants 10% because he claims to be such a good rep for sellers.

Realtors who work for owners who are selling it themselves may charge a set amount—flat fees range generally from $300 to $600 for 6 month listings on major websites and lots of photos (renewals after 6 months are something like half the original). Some charge 1% for listings and other help and there are a variety of fees for other things.

The traditional realtor business model is changing as more people sell themselves. You have to figure out how to do listings and collect all the information required. You have to write a description of the property that will interest buyers and take good photos to show off the property. That takes time. The hardest part is understanding the contract and negotiating it for most people. In Colorado, the normal real estate contracts are all online and many of them are writable pdf's. A lawyer can help with that for far less than a realtor's commission. Then comes finding all the required paperwork. From there on the title company generally takes care of it. Abstracts of title are pretty much a thing of the past. Title companies don't do very good title searches, but they figure the risk involved is worth it. If you want to get rich, start a title company.

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Old 02-03-2013, 05:43 PM   #423
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Thanks, Gene. I was curious as to how it works there.

Here (in Ontario), from our recent experience, 5% is pretty well standard, and in fact, when we sold our home in Aurora, ON in 2010, I negotiated another quarter per cent from the selling agent. The same thing happened when my daughter sold her first home here. The selling agent has done quite a bit of work for our family in Ottawa.

No matter how easy it gets to sell a home oneself, I personally can't see that as happening for me. I strongly believe I need a buffer between myself and the buyer. I take my home very seriously, and the inevitable 'trash talk' buyers use would drive me crazy.

With the season warming up in the not-to-distant future, I feel certain your home in Colorado will sell soon.
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Old 02-03-2013, 10:39 PM   #424
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Hi, in my area they charge 6% unless it's a probate sale then it's 5%. If you try to pay them less, they won't put any effort into selling it. [both the selling agent and the buying agents]
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:50 PM   #425
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In Denver, the market has heated up substantially and people are getting offers above their asking price. This should get to western Colorado soon, I hope. This is the time to buy, so we did.

We have a contract on a house near (and a half mile above) Grand Junction. It has an open floor plan on the main floor, master bedroom and office too with master bath and another 3/4 bath. Large 2 car garage, extra one for gas powered toys or storage, walkout basement with 700 sq. ft. workshop, 2 spare bedrooms and an extra room in the basement—that room will be turned into a bedroom/office. Parking for RV is tight, but I may get a front hitch to make it easier. Also has one of the best wells in the area, great views of the Grand Valley and Book Cliffs. I don't think we could do better for the price. It is 20-25 minutes to downtown or out to the shopping areas, but much cooler than Grand Junction. Lots of public land including Colorado NM nearby. We hope to get a good offer on our Crawford house when spring comes because we hope people are going to realize they have to act now. The new house is only 10 years old, but needs work—new paint, paneling, better looking doors, window "treatments" ("treatments" cost more than "shades" or "curtains"). The house has some things that cost a lot (for ex., copper gutters, 50 year fireproof shingles), then has hollow core doors. Lots of extra stuff in a good sized kitchen, but ugly paint. New interior doors will cost about $1,000 for the main floor, cellular shades about the same for the main floor windows. That will make a tremendous difference. Paneling—several grand more. Changing a the basement "paint room" into an office/bedroom, about $2,000. It'll keep me from spending more on the trailer since I'll be busy.

Now we have to look at some more advertising for the Crawford house and adjoining lot. So, we'll be splitting our time between houses. This will give us little time to travel this year. We will be going to the Balloon Fiesta and spending some time before and after in NM. We may take a few days in Ouray for our anniversary of meeting each other—8 days after closing. Our 25th wedding anniversary is at the end of April, but we aren't sure what to do since issues may come up with the house purchase. Owning 2 houses is expensive, so we'll have to be careful with money so we don't dip into principal. We can move a lot ourselves to save money, but having moved ourselves before, I think we'll get help this time for the really heavy stuff. We are older and aches and pains mount up. Hopefully, we will find some tine to make short trips to FS campgrounds.

I have been putting up new handrails and newell posts on the front steps here. This will enhance the first view of the house. The glass insert in the front door had to be replaced—thermopane had failed. No problem with Masonite honoring the warranty, though I had to do the replacement myself. We are saving the old glass since it is a very nice looking arts and crafts design. I am thinking of making a frame, back light it and mount it in the new house somewhere. When working on installing a newell post a couple of days ago, I slipped on ice, fell down with my truck keys in my pocket creating a bruise on my leg, and while somewhat shocked on the ground for about a second, then the post landed on my head and I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. No bump on my head, though a little soreness and my leg doesn't feel great, but no bad bruise. After about 20 seconds lying there, I got up and installed the post. I'm sure it could have been worse, but it feels good to be old and still not very damaged. Don't try this at home.

Gene
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Old 03-09-2013, 06:01 AM   #426
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Wondered what was happening on all this.

Sounds like buying the new one was a good move, and lots of things to do there to keep you out of mischief for awhile.

Hope the Crawford house sells soon. Fingers are still crossed here.


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Old 03-09-2013, 01:07 PM   #427
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Same here.
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Old 03-09-2013, 01:47 PM   #428
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Congrats, Gene and Barb!

Which direction from town are you located?


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Old 03-09-2013, 03:11 PM   #429
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Lynn,

South, close to Colorado NM and with some BLM lands on the other sides. This, to me, is where the Rocky Mountains and Redrock country collide. Piñon forest, but kind of sparse, probably because it was grazed for a couple of generations. The house is at 6,902', so we will be moving up in the world 66'. It is sort of a mesa which from Grand Junction looks like a wall of rock south of the city. The road up is pretty steep and calls for 2nd gear coming down. The house is built into the upper side of a bluff overlooking the road, GJ, the Grand Valley and the Book Cliffs (another rock wall stretching east/west along the Colorado River east and west from there. We always look for houses with views.

Are you going to the balloons this year?

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Old 03-09-2013, 03:26 PM   #430
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Good luck. And it's great when we can stil take a fall and bounce a little. Sal
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Old 03-09-2013, 03:34 PM   #431
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I think I know that general area, Gene. My brother used to own some acreage up there off the back entrance road to the monument. Really pretty area! And not as cold or as hot as the bottoms in the city, where inversions really create havoc.

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Old 03-09-2013, 06:44 PM   #432
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Lynn,

This property is above the inversions—reminds me of driving down to Denver from the mountains and seeing the dome of pollution over the city. The inversions seem to be worse in the winter. I'm not sure whether you mean the road from Fruita, from GJ, the Glade Park road on the south side of the Monument or what. This house is on another access to Glade Park that goes around the eastern edge of the Monument. There are still ranches in the area and this property was once a ranch and the original owner bought 160 acres and homesteaded it about a century ago.

The weather is about the same as here, but GJ too often gets up to 100˚ in the summer, but we'll probably top off at around 90˚. Should cool off quickly in the evening because of the terrain sloping quickly down to the river.

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Old 03-09-2013, 09:57 PM   #433
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Gene,
Congrats on the new house. Hope the other one sells quickly and profitably

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Old 04-01-2013, 04:32 PM   #434
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We've gotten through the loan process, the inspection process and other endless paperwork items. The price has been reduced as a result of the inspection and we are moving up the closing date a couple of weeks so we can get to work on remodeling. Buying a house has become a process that seems to go on and on. Maybe the mortgage process is slowing the housing recovery. They ask for paperwork that doesn't really prove you are honest and have assets, but makes them look like they are being responsible.

If you have contract, you have to remove the listing from the websites. If the buyer doesn't get a loan, you could miss the better part of the buying season. A real estate contract is not like any other contract—it has more holes in it than a colander. I hear horror stores about lenders acting like petty tyrants.

I understand there is more interest in the market here and hope we see it soon. People in cities are seeing the market heat up a lot and it eventually gets to rural areas.

We ordered sconces for the living/dining room—our first purchase. Not great lighting there, so this will help. It complements the industrial type lighting (art deco influenced) in the kitchen (all one room with vaulted ceiling in living/dining area, but the dark metal will set it off from the paneling. Since they didn't have the exact one we ordered originally, they gave us a price break on this one. See it at this website and click on bronze finish below the big photo: Artemis 2-Light Wet Location Wall Fixture

We looked in a lighting store and saw these in a catalog, but when I checked on the internet, they were at least 35% cheaper. Another one was half the price. I don't know how they expect to sell things if they don't compete, but a friend is buying lighting from them and it well acquainted with the internet, so some people just want to pay more. I don't mind paying a bit more to support local business, but the markups have to be reasonable. Next we have to look for ceiling fans and sconces for the bedroom. The lighting at the big boxes stores mostly looks wrong for our sense of decor. Prices are good, but many designs seem to be out of another era.

We had thought that aspen paneling was the easiest to find, but Sutherlands in Grand Junction just started to carry knotty pine beetle kill in 16' and much cheaper than aspen. Beetle kill has streaks of blue stain from a fungus that kills the tree after the beetles have weakened it (the beetles carry the fungus as a parasite). I realize blue stain doesn't sound very appealing, but it really looks good in paneling. Sutherlands is a chain found mostly in rural areas. We often find things there cheaper than HD and Lowe's. Unfortunately, beetles are killing all sorts of trees in the west from Canada to Mexico. Warmer weather is allowing them to survive winters and some species are reproducing as much as 4 times faster. Dying forests can be found in too many places. But the wood is pretty. Our house here is built of Lodgepole beetle kill though you only see the stain if you cut up the logs into boards.

I'm itching to travel. We will be taking the trailer to Ouray for the 3rd straight year over Memorial Day weekend—our 27th anniversary of meeting each other. We hope some friends can join us. Our 25th wedding anniversary is at the end of April and we'll go to a hotel in Glenwood Springs—usually this is too early to summerize the trailer around here, though it is warming up early again this year here and the drought continues.

I think if we don't get a buyer we'll take some short trips to a public campground to relax. Remodeling will be harder than when we bought this house since I am older, but I'm hoping my trainee/assistant can learn things like drywall finishing and screen fixing. Then I'll put a nail gun in her hands and hope she doesn't point it toward me. She is good at painting straight lines (I have no patience for using painter's tape) for cutting in and will keep me well fed. If we have a buyer, it will tie us down more, but it has to happen. The balloon fiesta may be our only long trip—the fiesta, a few nights in Alb. before, and a few in Santa Fe after. If nothing by November, maybe another long trip to make us human.

We haven't looked inside the trailer since November. I hope no animals have taken up residence or leaks have happened. I gotta fix the screen latch and check things out soon. Maybe repack the bearings at some point.

I'm thinking of Newfoundland a lot. Maybe in 2014.

Gene
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